Where I do my writing

Front of house from gardenMindfulness is so much easier when you live on Porto Santo island, Madeira’s ‘golden sister.’ Please excuse me for taking a step sideways this week to advertise the fact that our beautiful holiday home is now up for sale. It is semi-detached (we live next door and have NO plans to leave…ever). But we have decided to stop renting out the house and sell it instead. It is fully-equipped and furnished, and would make a great holiday home, or you could be like us and escape to a permanent paradise.  Other pictures may be seen on the Rightmove site at  https://www.rightmove.co.uk/overseas-property/property-84740432.html 

I am travelling for a few days, and also marking IB Diploma Extended Essays, but will be back with more suggestions from Psychology Sorted books very soon.

Planning your course effectively – the biological approach and development

Overlaps Dev_Bio green

The biological approach to children’s cognitive development is well-established, as it seems obvious that learning must be directly related to neurogenesis (growth of new synapses connecting neurons) and neural pruning (‘cutting back’ of synapses no longer needed).  But of course this development through neuroplasticity requires not only good nutrition and nurturing to prevent injury, but also social stimulation, so a lot of research has looked at how trauma and deprivation may affect the cognitive development of the child, by delaying or preventing brain development in crucial areas like the hippocampus and amygdala.

The techniques used to study the brain and neuroplasticity topics under the biological approach can be successfully taught using material from the developing as a learner and the influences on social and cognitive development topics within the developmental psychology option. Recommended studies are Chugani’s (1998) PET scans of children from birth to late adolescence; Gotgay et al’s (2004) longitudinal study mapping brain development using MRI scanning; Luby et al’s (2013) research into the effects of poverty on the brain and the mediating effect of caregiving.

More help with planning is coming in the following weeks!

References (summaries of these studies can be found in Psychology Sorted Book 2):

Chugani, H. T. (1998). A critical period of brain development: studies of cerebral glucose utilization with PET. Preventive Medicine, 27(2), pp. 184-188.

Gotgay, G., Giedd, J., Lusk, L., Hayashi, K., Greenstein, D.et al. (2004). Dynamic Mapping of Human CorticalDevelopment During Childhood Through Early Adulthood. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 101(21), pp. 8174-8179.

Luby, J., Belden, A., Botteron, K., Marrus, N., Harms, M. P., Babb, C.,et al. (2013). The effects of poverty on childhood brain development: the mediating effect of caregiving and stressful life events. JAMA Pediatrics, 167(12), pp. 1135-1142.